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2826 Old Lee Highway #350
Fairfax, Va 22031

Obesity and Back Pain Weight Loss Fairfax Va

Obesity and Back Pain Weight Loss Fairfax Va

Between 1980 and 2014 obesity nearly doubled worldwide according to a new study published in The Lancet. Obesity (a body mass index over 30) afflicted only 4.8% of men and 7.9% of women back in 1980. By 2014 that had ballooned to 9.8% of men and 13.8% of women.

The prevalence of back pain has also been rising but not as fast. Still there seem to be a strong association between back pain and obesity. Whether obesity causes back pain is not clear as it could be that back pain makes people sedentary and in turn they gain weight. Regardless of which comes first, the association is still clear. A 2009 study found “obese subjects had a higher prevalence of low back pain than overweight (but non-obese) individuals, who in turn had a higher prevalence of back pain than non-overweight individuals.”

Then there is a new study that found that a higher body mass index was associated with higher back pain intensity and higher levels of disability. The body mass index is based on weight versus height (a quick search online will find the formula). A higher body mass index tends to predict more fat. There are exceptions however. An extremely well built person, like body builders, wrestlers, or football running backs may have a lot of weight relative to their height and have a high body mass index but have a very little fat and so should not be considered overweight or obese. Accordingly, they also looked a total fat mass (using special x-ray equipment.) Heavy but not lean people did not have increased risk of back problems. In contrast they found an association between higher back pain intensity and higher total fat mass as well as more fat in the legs. They found a similar association for greater disability with higher total fat mass as well as higher fat in the legs, arms, or trunk.

We think the lesson is if you have back pain and are overweight, or if you want to help avoid back pain and disability in the future, go for plenty of exercise and a healthy diet. We can help you plan both diet and exercise. If back pain is limiting your exercise we may be able to relieve it through our modern modalities of chiropractic care and get you back to working out. We provide a very comprehensive physician assisted weight loss program in Fairfax Va.  Just call us at 703-573-5500703-573-5500.

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